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Prescribed Burn at Grand Canyon National Park

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Date: September 17, 2010
Contact: Shannan Marcak, 928-638-7958
Contact: Fire and Aviation, 928-638-7958


Grand Canyon, AZFire and Aviation staff have completed burning operations on the Buggeln prescribed fire unit, located 11 miles southeast of Grand Canyon Village. 325 acres were treated on this first entry burn. Some heavy smoke was generated in the course of ignition work. Crews will remain on site monitoring the unit as well as securing the containment lines.

Today, Fire and Aviation staff ignited approximately 700 acres in the Hance and Watson 1 units located nine miles southeast of Grand Canyon Village. This is a third entry maintenance prescribed fire. Ignition operations  included the use of a park helicopter to complete the prescribed fire treatment. Little smoke is expected to impact Highway 64 or nearby viewpoints as a result of this prescribed fire project. However, some residual smoke may be experienced through the weekend as night time winds shift directions.

Portions of these burn units, and the surrounding areas burned previously last year during the Ruby Fire on the Kaibab National Forest (to the west and south) and the Game Reserve Fire within Grand Canyon National Park (to the north and east). The Watson 1 burn unit includes 235 untreated acres within the 365 acre unit. The Hance burn unit includes 272 untreated acres within the 342 acre unit. The Watson1 and Hance burn units were last treated with prescribed fire in 2002. Both units contain ponderosa pine and pinyon/juniper stands as well as grass and brush.

Prescribed burns play an important role in decreasing risks to life, property, and resources by reducing accumulations of forest fuels and maintaining the natural role of fire in a fire-dependent ecosystem.

Minor traffic delays are possible in the vicinity of this planned fire. When necessary, public safety personnel will direct traffic in these areas.

For more information on plans for South Rim prescribed fires, please call 928-638-7958. To learn more about fire management in Grand Canyon National Park, visit the park's website at www.nps.gov/grca/parkmgmt/firemanagment.htm



Did You Know?


Each year, thousands of hikers enter the Grand Canyon on the Bright Angel Trail. They follow a route established by prehistoric people for two key reasons: water and access. Water emerges from springs at Indian Garden, and a fault creates a break in the cliffs, providing access to the springs.